Taronga Conservation Society Australia’s first carbon off-set project will fund extensive forest regeneration in Western NSW in partnership with Woolworths, the Zoo’s Director, Cameron Kerr, said today.
The project offsets the carbon emissions from the paper manufacture of the joint Taronga and Woolworths’ Super Animals Wildlife Collectibles album and card series by supporting the Urisino Ecosystem Regeneration Project near Wanaaring, saving 4761 tonnes of carbon.
Project Urisino covers over 800 square kilometres of bushland that was once owned by famous pastoralist, Sir Sydney Kidman. The properties in the project had become overgrazed and degraded. It is Australia’s first carbon project focusing on regenerating degraded land
Mr Kerr said: “The collectables campaign have been one of the most successful education initiatives, bringing Australian and international wildlife to hundreds of thousands of primary students who enjoyed discovering the wonder of wildlife through the facts and illustrations on the cards.”
“This off-set program is the next important step in our commitment to the environment in support of wildlife. It shows what can be achieved when organisations like Woolworths and Taronga work together for with conservation and the environment.”
The project will help protect habitat for wildlife including Brolgas , Major Mitchell Cockatoos, the Bush Stone Curlew, Stimson’s Python and Black-breasted Buzzard as well as other reptiles and mammals.
Karen Madden, Woolworths Head of Properties, Sponsorship & Events said; “Woolworths is delighted that the funds we contributed through the Super Animals Program is going to help in our own backyard and help educate Aussie kids about our amazing wildlife”.
The funding will support the regeneration of vegetation across the three properties that comprise the Urisino project, rapidly expanding natural absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and simultaneously offsetting the carbon costs of producing the millions of swap cards and albums produced for Australian children.
Taronga and Woolworths already work together on conservation projects including sea turtle tracking and will soon announce a joint research project on Port Jackson Sharks in partnership with the Macquarie University.
Taronga’s own programs include recycling over a 1/3 of water used on site daily, a waste management partnership with SITA that achieves one of the highest recycling rates in Sydney for general waste and solar thermal heating for Lemurs. Taronga Western Plains Zoo, has installed a solar energy system for the Billabong Camp and a 10KW PV System and solar thermal heating at the new Elephant facilityand energy efficiency projects that have led to significant annual energy savings of between 30-40%.